It is a simple thing to check where your website is ranked as compared to your competitors. You can conduct a normal google search by just typing the keywords you wish to rank in the google search bar. However, this is a manual task, and it is the least recommended that you use this method when checking for your SEO ranking. In addition to this, the search results pulled up by Google are not constant. Using this method will only guarantee you a rough idea of where you rank.
Several tools are more detailed and efficient and will provide you with results in an automatic method. The bad news is, most of these tools are expensive. However, one free and accurate method is entering the Google Search Console.
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Google search console was initially referred to as Google Webmaster Tool. It gives organic ranking information, including:
- Which site questions site was your site shown and found for
- The average position for a specific search on the page
- The number of clicks your page received
- The trends these matrices take over a certain period
There is a disclaimer on this one. If Search Console was not set up, it might not be able to give you results instantly. However, it is very easy to do the setup.
Use your Google account to log in to Search Console. Add your web domain, after which you will be required to verify your website, which you can do using several means:
- Adding the HTML code to the head tag of the website
- Upload an HTML file
- Verify the file on Google Analytics
- Using a WordPress site, the Yoast SEO makes it easy to integrate the HTML code
- Go to the performance report dashboard.
This is where all the data analysis is done. From here, you can see the number of clicks and impressions your data receives for a specific period. It also shows you the average click-through rate (CTR) and the average position of your entire website.
The four boxes at the top: total clicks, average CTR, total impressions and average positioning will show you the information in a table format.
- Filter your data.
There are several filters you can use on your data: search type, page, date, query, device and country. Select one of these filters to edit the information or the plus sign to add more filters. Several filters can be on at the same time.
Search type: this refers to whether the user looked for an image search or video. The search type filter will look through the data and determine your site’s image search and video search.
Date: the new Search Console allows you to access data of up to 16 months. By adjusting the date range filter, you can pick the time frame you want to search. It can also allow you to do a period comparison, for example, January vs February. This provision allows you to determine whether your website is improving over time.
Page: this filter allows you to see how a certain page or a number of them perform. It allows you to filter by:
- URLs that have a specific word
- URLs that lack a specific word
- Exact URLs
Queries: this filter allows you to check how your website ranks averagely with certain keywords. It allows you to filter by:
- Queries that contain certain keywords
- Queries that lack certain keywords
- Specific queries
Country: if you are a business person, it is recommended that you filter by the country in which your business operates. If your business is international, you should filter by the individual countries to examine how your business is performing in each.
Device: it enables you to filter by mobile, tablet or desktop.
What is website traffic?
Website traffic refers to the number of people who visit your pages. This is very important as it shows you how your site is performing. When you have a high number of visitors on your site, there are higher chances that they will take positive action on the pages, including purchasing a product, downloading a file or even signing up for a newsletter.
Why is it important to observe website traffic?
It is important as a website owner to always keep an eye on your website traffic because this will let you know several things that you may need to adjust on.
Checking on the traffic of your competitors, for instance, will help you know which content attracts traffic on their pages. This knowledge will help you create better content of the same themes and have that traffic coming your way.
Doing a constant analysis of your competitors’ website traffic equips you with crucial information about your industry, and you also get to learn how your competitors can attract more users on their pages and learn the strategies they have put in place. It also gives you a clear picture of how much competition your field has.
However, it is very difficult to get all this information as no one will open their traffic for everyone to view. Some of the ways you can use to find this important information are:
- Website traffic checker tools
Many tools exist that allow you to check the traffic of other websites. There are paid, and free tools that analyze the number of visitors a site gets in a certain period. Some of these websites include SEMrush, Ahrefs, Alexa Ranking, SimilarWeb, among several others.
- Observe the total number of social shares
With the knowledge of which tools to use, you can also check the total number of shares a website acquires. Open your competitor’s page and go to their blog section. Then open their most recent articles and view the number of users that share on social media. The higher the number of shares a website has, the more its content engages its users.
- Check the number of blog comments
- Check the number of YouTube views and the subscribers
- Look for advertising pages
Advertisers always get attracted to websites that have more traffic. Getting this information can help you study another website’s traffic and what the advertisers say about these pages.
Therefore, we have seen how observing your SEO ranking can go a long way in helping you know how to better your website and even how to attract more traffic to your website. With this information in your hands, you are on your way to achieving way more than you ever expected.
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Last Updated in January 2022 by Lukasz Zelezny